When a lot of small business owners think of the word freelancer, they generally think of people who work on a freelance basis in just a handful of occupations.
Writers, designers and photographers, for example, are three of the most prominent types of freelancers that businesses can hire.
However, it’s actually possible to be able to outsource most of your business’s processes to a freelancer and if you’re currently in the position where you’re looking for some help but don’t want to take on a full-time employee, take a look at the following information to help ensure that you choose the best freelancer possible to outsource your work to.
1. Decide exactly what you want to outsource
One of the major differences between an employee and a freelancer – and one that not a lot of people pick up on at first – is that an employee’s job description will generally detail what they’re expected to do first and foremost, as well as featuring a few extra aspects that are relatively broad.
This could mean that if they were hired as a Project Manager, they might also have to take on the duties of a Project Assistant and carry out all of their own administrative work.
In this example, should you hire a freelance Project Manager, however, unless stated and agreed otherwise, their fee would generally only account for the actual management side and any administrative work would need to be carried out by someone else.
It’s because of this reason why you need to sit down and work out exactly what you want to hire a freelancer to do, as there fee will be based solely around what you explain – anything extra will usually incur an additional charge.
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2. Ask everyone for a recommendation
When you start looking for freelancers, it can be tempting to simply ask for recommendations from your business colleagues.
However, you might just be surprised at how many freelancers you could be introduced to if you explain to everyone that you’re looking for assistance with a certain part of your business.
Your brother might know a freelance graphic designer because of his time at university, your mother’s best friend’s daughter might be a freelance accountant or the barman at your local bar might know of someone who also drinks at the same place who’s a freelance writer.
This isn’t to say that you have to go out and tell the whole world that you’re looking for help, but just keep in mind that you might want to broaden your horizons when you start to put the feelers out for a freelancer.
3. Understand how freelancers work
Although it will most probably work out cheaper to hire a freelancer to carry out a certain piece of work on an as-and-when basis rather than take on a full-time employee, it’s important that you understand freelance rates are almost always more expensive than the equivalent of a full-time employee’s hourly rate.
Due to the uncertainty and irregularity of the work – as well as for the fact they have to pay their own taxes and associated costs – freelancers generally charge more for their services and therefore whilst you’ll be given greater control over how much money you spend, if you’re looking for a high quality freelancer, it would be recommended that you don’t expect to pay the same hourly rate as you would for an employee carrying out the same role.
Hiring a freelancer can be a fantastic way to get help with any aspect of your business without having to take on an employee, something which can be particularly costly.
It’s important that you hire the best freelancer possible to ensure you get the greatest return on your investment, however and if the above three points are followed, there’s no reason why any business can’t hire the most suitable freelancer for their needs.